A study shows that listening to music can increase your endurance. However the music must be at a certain tempo: 120-140 beats per minute (bpm). If you’ve ever been in a kickboxing, Zumba or an aerobics class the music tempo is usually pretty fast.

It’s purpose is to get you so engaged in the music that you don’t pay attention to how tired and sweaty you truly are. The instructors create great playlists to distract you. Very sneaky. There are so many websites now that play all types of music, genres and artists you might not be aware of, you can create your own playlist that will help to push yourself even harder during your workout.

Here is a list of websites that you can use to compile your custom playlist for running, dancing, hiking or whatever your workout is for the day.

Run Hundred

This site is really cool and very personal. Real people chose and submit songs that they actually listen to, like and have in their personal playlists. What also makes this site unique is they have the BPM next to each song. So when you create your playlist you can place slower tempo songs accordingly in warm up, actual workout and cool down. There’s also songs from new and old school. When you sign up for the mailing list they don’t annoy you daily, they will send you a playlist of songs straight to your email. It’s a huge community of like minded people.


Nobody wants to listen to the same songs and artists over and over again. This is where Songza comes in. They have a concierge that shows the day, and depending on the time of day they list activities you might possibly be doing. You choose the activity and it puts together a playlist for you. You can use this to get song ideas for your next workout. Sometimes, during the evening a workout playlist is already up and ready to go.

Running Playlist

This site is pretty well organized. It gives you a bunch of songs to sweat it out to. Again you’re going to get a bunch of variety here as well. When you go on this site you will find loads of info on each song. So if you like the single you can just buy the whole album. Speaking of album here is the list of specs Running Playlist gives you:

  • Album
  • Genere
  • Song Name
  • Artist
  • Song length
  • BPM
  • iTunes link
  • Amazon link

That’s a good chunk of information.


If you like to run and want to work on your personal record (PR) this site is going to be one of your favorites. It asks you to enter in your mile time. And don’t be shy, be truthful, trust it will only benefit you. After you enter your mile time it finds music to match your pace. All types of songs will pop up with the bpm next to it. If you want to lower your mile time it also gives suggested songs with a faster bpm and it tells you your pace if you were to run at the suggested songs bpm. So freaking cool, yes.


Unlike the other websites mentioned here this is an app. They have a website, but you can do it all on your phone. Instead of listening and getting used to new music you might not like PaceDJ pulls music straight from your phones SD card. In the settings the app has you choose your activity type, then takes you through different options. It then determines the tempo of the songs on your phones SD card, creates customized pacing mixes. It might not be too accurate but it’s still worth a try.

Everyone has their own preference as to what types of music gets them going for certain fitness activities. Overall high tempo seems to do the trick for the majority. Billboard.com made this super cool infographic called “The Beat That Moves Your Feet”. It shows the top workout genres, top three workout artists, the top music genres that power your workout and more. It’s worth a looksie.

Check it out to see if it will help you compile a killer playlist to push you to go faster and harder during your workout. And if you have any more website or app suggestions to help build a killer workout playlist chime off in the comments. Sharing is caring!

Teena Cathey

Teena Cathey is a certified personal trainer who focuses on endurance and energy training. She runs two group fitness boot camp classes called Go Harder in Detroit, MI. Teena is author of the free ebook, How to Find The Right Personal Trainer. When not with clients Teena enjoys painting, playing basketball or with her dog Mister. She’s very social, follow her on... Read More

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